This October, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chief executive officer Sergio Marchionne is ready to deliver the ultimate high-profile initial public offering of the year – the ultra-luxurious Ferrari is becoming an independent publicly-owned company.
FCA’s boss has been touting the imminent spin off as the sexiest even across the automotive industry this year and the iconic Ferrari brand has enough panache to make Wall Street blood pressure boil, but the true car enthusiasts also know this once in a lifetime even is also the chance to fulfill the ultimate investment dream. There’s one catch – a call to the broker asking him to make you a Ferrari owner will remain unanswered – because as usual, an IPO of this magnitude will be mostly unavailable to individual investors. Fret not, once early shares are snatched, Average Joe will get a chance to hold a piece of Ferrari – albeit at a sizeable premium. “For individuals, it will be almost impossible to get Ferrari at the (IPO) offer price,” says Matt Kennedy, an analyst at Renaissance Capital, a global IPO investment advisor. “You can buy shares – it just will be a lot higher than what institutions paid.”
FCA most likely – according to the investment community – won’t have any trouble having firm commitments from the underwriting banks for the entire share purchase – which happens even before any shares are available for public trading. The company, the world’s seventh largest automaker, has disclosed it would only make around 10 percent of Ferrari’s stock available during the IPO, the rest being equally distributed among the current FCA shareholders. And another 10 percent is inviolable – being owned by Piero Ferrari, son of company founder Enzo Ferrari.